''Shallow Hal'''s 23.3 million may not be huge, but it's enough to place the Paltrow-in-a-fat-suit romantic comedy in second
Monsters, Inc.

In the battle between the beauty and the beasts, the beasts won handily.

A new comedy from Oscar winner Gwyneth Paltrow couldn’t come close to unseating the furry friends of Disney’s creature-comfort hit ”Monsters, Inc.,” which grossed an impressive $46.2 million in its second weekend, down only 26 percent from its $62.6 million debut. The only real fight here is a clash of the computer-generated titans: Can ”Monsters” top ”Shrek”’s almost $270 million take so far? After just 10 days in release, the ”Monsters” have amassed $122.8 million. By comparison, DreamWorks’ ”Shrek” had earned a total of $111.7 million after its second weekend.

Paltrow’s comedy, ”Shallow Hal,” premieried in second place, with $23.3 million. The romantic comedy is directed by the Farrelly Brothers and costars Jack Black as a womanizer who falls for not-so-svelte Paltrow after being hypnotized. ”Hal”’s first-weekend gross is certainly an improvement over that of the Farrellys’ last directorial effort, this summer’s ”Osmosis Jones,” which tanked with only $5.3 million in its opening three days. And ”Hal” almost matched the $24.2 million debut of the Farrelly’s last star vehicle, the 2000 Jim Carrey romp ”Me, Myself & Irene.”

As expected, Jet Li’s action thriller ”The One” fell to No. 3, dropping a typical-for-an-action-movie 52 percent to $9.1 million in its second weekend. Close behind was the John Travolta kid-in-jepoardy drama ”Domestic Disturbance,” which dropped just 39 percent to $8.5 million, bringing its 10-day total to $26 million. Perhaps even for Travolta’s fans, four films in only 18 months qualifies as a disturbance.

Rounding out the top five was the debut of the Gene Hackman/Danny DeVito crime drama ”Heist,” which opened with a ho-hum $8 million. With only mixed reviews and no young star to draw the core teenage audience, the David Mamet film had no chance of scoring a double-digit opening. Next time, David, bring in some bank robbers from ”Dawson’s Creek.”

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Domestic Disturbance
  • Movie
  • 91 minutes